Couscous vs Oat bran: Which Is Better?

This article explains the key similarities and differences between couscous and oat bran, foods from the grains food group. Read on to learn more about the couscous vs oat bran comparison.
Esther Bumpus, Health Writer

Written by Esther Bumpus, Health Writer. Updated on January 25, 2023.

Couscous and oat bran belong to the grains food group, one of the staple food groups for people on a plant-based diet.

Grains and grain products are an affordable source of carbohydrates, as well as essential vitamins and minerals, including B vitamins (such as thiamin, riboflavin, and niacin), iron, and zinc, minerals that are usually harder to get on a plant-based diet.

They also provide a small amount of protein and healthy fats.

However, it is important to note that whole grains are generally a better source of these nutrients than refined grains.

This article will thoroughly compare couscous and oat bran and help you learn more about their similarities and differences.


Couscous (Couscous) is a type of pasta made from small, round granules of semolina, which is the coarsely ground endosperm of durum wheat.

It is a good source of carbohydrates and small amounts of protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals like iron and B vitamins, depending on the ingredients used in the dish’s preparation.

Couscous is a staple food in North Africa and the Middle East and is traditionally served as a side dish or as a base for stews and salads. It is also gluten-free and easy to digest.

Couscous can be enjoyed in various ways. It can be cooked in different sauces, with herbs and spices, and can also be used in salads and soups. It can also be paired with vegetables and lean protein sources such as legumes and in moderate portions.

Couscous is an excellent source of Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid).

It also contains a good amount of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), and Vitamin B3 (Niacin) and some Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine), and Vitamin B9 (Folate).

Oat bran

Oat bran, a by-product of oat milling, is derived from the outer layer of the oat grain (Avena sativa).

It is a good source of dietary fibers, especially beta-glucan, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidant compounds that help to lower cholesterol, aid in digestion, and improve heart health.

Oat bran also contains a significant amount of minerals like iron, zinc, magnesium, and manganese, as well as B-vitamins like niacin, thiamin, and vitamins E and K.

It is often used as an ingredient in breakfast cereals, granolas, breads, and other baked goods, and also can be used as a thickener for soups, stews, and sauces.

Oat bran is an excellent source of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), and Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid).

It also contains a good amount of Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine), and Vitamin B9 (Folate) and some Vitamin B3 (Niacin), and Vitamin E.

Couscous vs Oat bran Nutrition

Now that we’ve described the origin, taste, and usage of these foods, we can move to the most interesting part – comparing couscous vs oat bran.

This comparison will start by comparing the caloric value of couscous and oat bran and their macronutrients and then go more in-depth by analyzing their vitamin and mineral content.

CouscousOat bran
Energy376 kcal246 kcal
Carbs77.4 g66.2 g
Sugar0 g1.45 g
Fiber5 g15.4 g
Protein12.8 g17.3 g
Fat0.64 g7.03 g
Saturated Fat0.117 g1.33 g

Couscous vs Oat bran Calories

Most calories in grains come from carbs.

Comparing oat bran vs couscous for weight loss, oat bran is slightly lower in calories, with 246 calories per 100 grams, compared to 376 calories per 100 grams of couscous.

However, both couscous and oat bran can and should be a part of a healthy diet, and neither one shouldn’t be avoided if you’re looking to lose weight.

Couscous vs Oat bran Protein

Grains and most grain products, including couscous and oat bran, are important sources of plant-based protein.

However, it should be noted that most grains, with the exception of quinoa and buckwheat, for example, are low in lysine and methionine.

That said, you can combine grains with legumes to get a complete protein.

Oat bran offers around 26% more protein than couscous.

Oat bran has 17.3 grams of protein per 100 grams, while couscous has 12.8 grams of protein per 100 grams.

Couscous vs Oat bran Carbs

Counting carbs can be important for some people for different reasons, including blood sugar control, weight management, or athletic performance.

It’s also important for people on a keto diet, so let’s compare the carbs content in couscous and oat bran.

The total amount of carbohydrates is around 14% higher in couscous than in oat bran. It has 77.4 grams per 100 grams, compared to 66.2 grams in oat bran.

There’s less sugar in couscous than in oat bran, 100% precisely.

That said, 100 grams of couscous contains 0 grams of sugar, while the same amount of oat bran contains 1.5 grams.

Lastly, let’s take a look at the dietary fiber in couscous and oat bran.

Dietary fiber keeps the digestive system healthy and helps with weight management by promoting a sense of fullness.

With 15.4 grams of fiber per 100 grams, oat bran is a better source of fiber than couscous which offers 5 grams per 100 gram portion.

Couscous vs Oat bran Fats

Like most other grains, couscous and oat bran are low in fat.

Fats in couscous and oat bran are mostly healthy unsaturated fats. They are naturally cholesterol-free and trans-fat-free.

Total fat in couscous and oat bran:

  • Couscous: 0.6 grams per 100 grams
  • Oat bran: 7 per 100 grams

Speaking of saturated fats, couscous is 92% lower in saturated fats.

Couscous and oat bran contain 0.1 grams and 1.3 grams of saturated fat per 100 grams, respectively.

Couscous vs Oat bran Vitamins Content

This section will discuss the vitamin content of couscous and oat bran.

Vitamins are micronutrients, meaning we need only a small amount. However, they are very important for many processes in our bodies.

Couscous has a higher amount of vitamin B1 (Thiamine), vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid), vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine), vitamin B9 (Folate), vitamin E, and vitamin K.

However, oat bran has a higher amount of vitamin B3 (Niacin).

Couscous and oat bran contain the same amount of vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin D, and vitamin B12 (Cobalamin).

The following table shows the exact amount of vitamins couscous and oat bran contain side by side, so you can easily compare them.

CouscousOat bran
Vitamin A00
Vitamin C00
Vitamin D00
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)0.163 mg1.17 mg
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)0.078 mg0.22 mg
Vitamin B3 (Niacin)3.49 mg0.934 mg
Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid)1.24 mg1.49 mg
Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine)0.11 mg0.165 mg
Vitamin B9 (Folate)20 µg52 µg
Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin)00
Vitamin E01.01 mg
Vitamin K03.2 µg

Couscous vs Oat bran Minerals Content

Minerals are important for our body to function properly. We need only a small amount of minerals, so they are called micronutrients.

Some minerals, like iron, calcium, zinc, or iodine, are relatively hard to get on a plant-based diet, so it’s important to choose your foods thoughtfully. This part of the couscous and oat bran comparison focuses on their mineral content.

Couscous is a better source of calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, and zinc than oat bran.

On the other hand, oat bran is a higher amount of sodium.

Couscous and oat bran contain the same amount of fluoride.

Check out the table below to learn how couscous and oat bran compare when it comes to mineral content.

CouscousOat bran
Calcium24 mg58 mg
Copper0.247 mg0.403 mg
Iron1.08 mg5.41 mg
Magnesium44 mg235 mg
Manganese0.78 mg5.63 mg
Phosphorus170 mg734 mg
Potassium166 mg566 mg
Selenium2.8 µg45.2 µg
Sodium10 mg4 mg
Zinc0.83 mg3.11 mg

The Final Word

This article highlighted the similarities and differences between couscous and oat bran.

Grains, also known as cereal grains, are an important source of nutrition for many people around the world. They are a rich source of carbohydrates, which provide energy for the body.

Whole grains contain important vitamins and minerals, such as B vitamins and iron. Whole grains, in particular, are high in dietary fiber and can help with digestion and weight management.

They may also have other health benefits, such as reducing the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and certain types of cancer.

Grains are also a staple food and an important source of food security in many parts of the world.


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